Tonight I was playing for a friend's composition recital - one of those where I was going to show up and play stuff I'd never seen before (we did have about an hour to go through music right before). I played ok, although my reed was not as stellar as it could have been, low notes not responding too well. AND this silly man had made two of the pieces START on low Cs (worse than Bbs in my world). But it went pretty well, and he had some nice things. And he paid me!!! Not expecting that, but so nice.
One of the pieces was sort of a mini requiem for choir that he'd written for 9/11, so weird that it was being performed now with the VT massacre. It was a very emotional piece. It morphed into an orchestral piece called Prayer for Peace, pretty oboe stuff.
He had hired mostly people from Big Symphony. Not all of them are that fab. Nuff said.
I am excited because he asked me to come Saturday to play for a funeral (sad occasion, but at least this was an old woman with full life) - and he pays very well. I have done quite a bit with him over the past year, always fun to play with his church. They do kind of newish music, but all the arrangements are by my friend. He does a great job and I always have fun harmony parts to play and lots of gratifying solos. Yay! I love having gigs.
I also got called to play with a local college - they need a principal oboe for their spring concert. I thought they would just have me come in, and I was kind of reluctant, but they are paying union scale!
I have never actually joined the union (for more than one gig at a time) since there are so few jobs in the area, but its always great to make scale. I have friends who won't play unless they get paid, but I feel that is too limiting in this area. So I pretty much play when people ask, and usually I get paid. More and more, I get paid quite well. Of course, these are just occasional gigs, the symphony jobs are all taken (2 oboes plus one utility guy) and my little symphony just started paying the principals a small amount. Better than nothing, and it is great to get to play in the group! And we get better every year; maybe they will be paying everyone soon.
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